Protest turns ugly as police, mob come face to face

Protesters set police van ablaze while protesting disappearance of two men

Our Correspondent February 02, 2017

SUKKUR: Bunder Road in Sukkur turned into a battlefield on Thursday when clashes broke out between the police and an unruly mob that set a police mobile and motorcycle ablaze.

The protesters, all of whom belong to the Khoso community, were protesting the disappearance of two men.

More than two dozen protesters, led by local Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam — Fazal leader Amanullah Khoso, were travelling towards Dolphin Chowk when the police stopped them. After heated arguments with the B-Section police station SHO, the mob reportedly attacked him and his police party and tried to snatch their official weapons. The police baton charged the protesters and used tear gas to control the mob. Meanwhile, protesters set a police van and motorcycle on fire, after which the police also damaged some of the protester's vehicles. Police arrested 14 protesters, including Amanullah. The City ASP said a case is being registered against them. A police officer shared on the condition of anonymity that two of Amanullah's nephews, Murtaza and Mujtaba Khoso, went missing a few days ago near Deha village situated in Tamachani police limits. Amanullah blamed the Mirani community for their disappearance.

He claimed that, on Wednesday night, a number of men belonging to the Khoso community, led by Amanullah, ransacked houses of Mirani community members and torched the house of Sher Muhammad Mirani.

Tamachani police station head constable Aijaz Ahmed Chachar confirmed the incident and said an FIR was lodged against Amanullah and 15 others on the complaint of Sher Muhammad. The spokesperson of the Sukkur DIG told The Express Tribune that Amanullah is a criminal and was involved in attacking Rangers' personnel in 2008, for which FIR No 24/2008 was registered against him at the Lakhi Ghulam Shah police station. Sukkur SSP Amjad Ahmed Shaikh said that at first Amanullah blamed the Mirani community members for kidnapping his nephews and later shifted the blame on some of his opponents in the Khoso community.

Shaikh denied that the police arrested Amanullah's nephews. "The situation would have turned even worse if the police had not stopped the unruly mob from marching towards Minara Road, because that was the time when students were returning home," he explained.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 3rd, 2017.


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